Baghdad blasts
Iraqi residents stand next to a damaged vehicle at the scene of a car bomb blast in Baghdad. — Photo by AFP/File

RAMADI: A suicide bomber blew up a car packed with explosives near an anti-Qaeda militiaman's home in western Iraq on Friday, killing six people, the latest victims of a spike in nationwide unrest.

The suicide car bombing in Ramadi, capital of the predominantly Sunni province of Anbar, targeted Sahwa fighter Rabah al-Bahiya but he was not at home at the time of the attack, officials said.

The blast killed six people - four men and two women - and wounded 22 others, including five women, a police major and a medic at the city's hospital said.

The Sahwa are made up of Sunni Arab tribesmen who joined forces with the US military against al Qaeda from late 2006, helping turn the tide of the insurgency.

The latest violence comes amid a spike in attacks, with Iraq suffering a wave of unrest in June that left at least 282 people dead, according to an AFP tally, though government figures said 131 Iraqis died.

While violence in Iraq has declined dramatically since its peak in 2006-2007, attacks remain common across the country.

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